tv Worldwide Exchange CNBC October 31, 2012 5:00am-6:00am EDT
welcome to "worldwide exchange." i'm kelly evans. >> and i'm ross westgate. these are the headlines today from around the world. >> super storm sandy leaves a massive path of destruction in its wake. now residents belong a long and costly recovery process. >> the u.s. markets are set to reopen after being closed the last few days. the new york mass transit system is still shut down. new sthats now expect profit growth to hit the slowest since lifting.
welcome to today's show. the good news is financial markets start trading again. >> well, good news or it depends on how they open. certainly there's people with pent up demand. >> i think whatever happens, the fact that we're back up and trading is a good thing. >> the interesting question is why. but why couldn't the new york stock exchange have gone with its electronic trading systems. will this serve as a catalyst to maybe pursue that route the next time with more confidence. >> it's a day of cleanup. >> yes, it is. millions of people in the northeastern u.s. will spend days or weeks to recover from sandy, which is being blamed for at least 46 deaths. at its peak, more than 8.5 million homes and businesses
were without power. new york city and new jersey, especially the jersey shore, were the hardest hit. president obama will tour damage in atlantic city today. new york's subway system is flooded and will remain shut indefinitely. new jersey transit is also suspended. amtrak will resume limited regional service, but not to manhattan because of flooded tunnels. jfk and newark airports will reopen with limited service. airlines will resume service at other eastern airports. a.i.r. worldwide is putting the estimated insured losses at $7 billion to $15 billion. the u.s. financial markets, as we mentioned, will reopen today. the u.s. stock exchange says they didn't suffer any damage. goldman sachs will open its headquarters in lower manhattan, though it is still running on generator power. b of a will keep their offices closed, and citigroup says its
office in lower manhattan sustained extensive flooding. joining us for a firsthand look at the damage from new york is scott cohn. i know it's still dark around you, but what kind of damage are we seeing? >> well, kelly, a lot of what you just outlined s the reason that this is -- that this city is barely struggling to its feet a . it's going to be interesting to see how that works. lower manhattan suffered an extensive historic flood from the storm surge, the new york harbor, the hudson that inundated the lower part of the island. as a result, a lot of the underground infrastructure that makes this city work and gets people to work is simply useless and it's going to be that way for sometime. we're told that we may get some updated on timetables possibly today. but all of that is going to be a
lot of guess work. there is no power. there's no power for anywhere in the financial district, unless they have generators and there's not a lot of that. the only place that there does seem to be power is right around the corner from the new york stock exchange. because this is an era of electronic trading, the physical exchange building itself is not nearly as important as it once was, so they'll get a couple hundred people in here working under very bizarre conditions with no power around them. but the firms -- the people that need to run the computers, that need to place the orders and so on, is still next to impossible to get in there. >> scott, you mentioned your standing around the corner from the new york stock exchange. a lot of firms that do trading there are spread out throughout the east coast. is there a sense of just what the impact is going to be on trade as we get closer to the open today? >> i think in a week that's been
all about uncharted territory, we're about to venture in even further. we don't know that. a lot of firms were ready with contingency plans. as you said, there was that original plan to try and do everything electronically. but you still have to get people to the sites where they do that work, where they do that electronic trading. and there are a lot of issues with that. the good news is that the firms have been saying all along that they have alternate sites available, they can do work from other cities, they can bring in people -- they can have people working remotely, bring in essential people where they need to. the hope is this will be something resembling a normal market but we are not going to know until the opening bell about four and a half hours from now. >> that's for sure. scott cohn, thanks very much. >> good stuff, scott. let's remind you where we are. we're going to reopen today.
european stocks sort of trending a little bit higher. but there are a number of stocks we want to watch. >> a few names here that could be more action, particularly as people start to gauge what the fallout from sandy is going to be now. generic holdings, we found some frankfurt listings. you can see, though, lows among the companies that's potentially going to do better. those shares up a quarter of a percent in frankfurt trade. we will be outside with mary thompson a little bit later in the program. >> just want to point out those are all frankfurt quotes. at 5:50 eastern, we'll be looking at -- likely to recover for a few days. one of the main reasons for opening today was to get the options out of the way. >> last day of the month, a crucial one. so is the first day of the month, tomorrow. we'll also be joined by john
silvia, chief economist at wells fargo to talk through the economic impact of this storm. john, you say this could take as much as $30 billion out of the u.s. economy. any update to that figure? >> earlier comments, a lot of contingency plans, a lot of uncertainty here. but i think that's a fair estimate initially. let's look at governor christie's comments. depending so much on how fast the money gets back into the system and there's rebuilding. having lived in new york, you realize that the winter is coming. there's a huge inventive for people to start getting these things fixed right away. so that money will be put to work. so $30 billion is still our best estimate. at this point in time, depends on how quickly the money is put back into place. but having lived in this area, you probably appreciate the fact that actually a lot of improvements will happen now
with better infrastructure, especially on the public sector level, so we actually could see an addition to economic growth in the first quarter greater than the loss in the fourth quarter. >> this is an important point, because as people try to sort out the impact, we've seen estimates from your firm that this could take two tenths out of fourth quarter gdp. whether we'll actually give a fourth quarter boost. i just wonder -- i know the situation aren't directly comparable, but in japan, we failed to really see the economy benefit as much as expected from reconstruction efforts in the wake of its own natural disasters. should we be able to count on a boost here in the u.s.? >> yeah, i think because of the geography of where this is happening, it's a high valued area. property values are very high. atlantic city has its own special economic value to it. there's a lot of wealth in this area.
not dealing with an agricultural area. you expect that the money will be put to work. insurance reserves are going to be put into work. a lot of claims will be filed. there's a lot of incentive, both at the state and local level to rebuild some of this infrastructure. so i don't think you're dealing with the japan situation. this is a highly urban, highly wealthy area that's been impacted and i think they will add to economic growth, especially in the first quarter. >> what do you think of the net losers? businesses here who have lost income that just won't get it back. >> yeah, i think when you're thinking about the poll process, it's not so much retail, but you're thinking about who has capacity that's not going to be used right now, and there's no way going to be captured in the future. you're thinking about legend -- lodging, thinking about airlines, you can't fill a plane twice. you can't refill a hotel twice to make up for the lost
occupancy. so any kind of a business like that is going to be impacted here. >> you phrased it interestingly, which is that this could actually be a hit to wealth and a boost to gdp. in terms of the wealth hit, walk us through that piece of this and the significance of it. >> when you see the visual of the houses in queens, that's a hit on the wealth of the people who occupy those homes. you hit atlantic city and the boardwalk disappearing, there's ownership of businesses that will sort of disappear. as it gets to be rebuild, what we may see is rebuilding in a better way than we've seen in the past. and we saw this, for example, in louisiana. we saw this in parts of florida. so in the short run, there's a big hit on wealth. the rebuilding actually gives us an opportunity to do it better. >> that's perhaps one hopeful
message to kcome out of all of this. thank you so much, sir. now, of course, we're going to see u.s. stock markets reopening today. with that, all focus is on futures. futures have been trading all week, but we haven't been able to see follow-through action. today we'll get to see that followthrough action. the dow jones is implied to open higher. it's expected to add more than 70 points. the nasdaq and s&p 500 are also expected to add to their positions. going into the week, we had a lot of people focusing on the 1,400 level as a key gauge between weaker and stronger market sentiments, so that's one to keep in mind. european markets have been painting a pretty positive picture. the ftse 100 is fractionally positive. the xetra dax adding .7 of a percent. the ibex adding .9.
>> bund auction coming up today. we'll keep an eye on that. yields a little bit higher. yields in spain just slightly higher. still below the 5% mark in italy as well. ten-year yield with treasuries opening today. slightly higher yields at the moment. on the currency market, just keep your eyes on where we are. dollar-yen has hit a one-week low. a lot of people can't didn't quite get out of that. back up to 130. the aussie slightly firmer against the dollar. the dollar is weaker against most cross rates at the moment. that's where we stand here. sixuan has the update for us. >> no spooky ending the october markets here in asia with most in the green. high speed rail stocks led the
charge on policy cues. the hang seng snapped a three-day losing streak with industrials and mainland banks helping out. but china lost ground after a slump in q3 profit. the nikkei recovered from yesterday's losses despite an 18-month low in october pmi. auto makers rallied with fuji hitting an 11-year high. in south korea, industrial output rose .8 of a percent in september, adding to optimism. gains in tech firms, health care, and chemicals led to the support of the kospi. we saw broad based gains on the australian market, but ended marginally lower after being dragged down by its uk units. quickly, some big results to tell you about.
mazda motors, panasonic and toshiba also promising earning after the bell but they all cut their four-year outlooks, so we'll watch the market reaction on these stocks tomorrow. ross, back to you. >> okay, sixuan, thank you. now let's take a look at what's on the agenda today in the u.s. as we prepare for financial markets to reopen. we'll get the third quarter employment cost index at 8:30 eastern, as scheduled. 10:00, the chicago pmi, a key one to gauge ism sentiment going forward. just before the bell, we'll hear from gm, mastercard and mgm resorts, southern company, and waste management. still to come, we'll continue our coverage of sandy. after the break, we'll get a forecast of some of the weather channel and we'll find out how it could impact the election as the president gets set to tour new jersey. bob...
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barclays with two new investigations in the u.s. as the bank unveiled a 23% drop in profit. barclays shares trading lower after the bank demands two new investigations. pre-tax figures down 23% to just above one billion pounds. mainly related to charges for missed payment protection policies. revenues below estimates at 6.8 billion pounds. the bank says as well the department of justice and securities and exchange commission have launched two probes into the third party relationship the barclays may have used to win or retain business in the united states. >> staying with financials, the days of 20% profit growth for china's big four banks may be a thing of the past. new estimates show growth could rise by as little as 5% this year as the central bank's mid year rate cuts kick in. smaller lenders could get hit
even larger as interest margins shrink. a consortium has decided to walk away after iron ore spurned its $1.2 billion offer. it's giving up further talks after the company called their bid opportunistic. sci-fi nerds did get darth vader and princess leia costumes out. i don't know what i just said. disney is buying lucas films. they're buying it for $4 billion in cash and stock. george lucas will become disney's second biggest individual shareholder with a 2 2.2% stake. disney plans at least three more "star wars" films, with the first set for release in 2015.
>> this was also a very unique opportunity. when you look at the world of entertainment, there's almost nothing like this. this is one of the most iconic, one of the most successful, one of the highest quality entertainment brands that exist in the world, and we thought it was a wonderful opportunity for this company to bring it in to disney and continue the great legacy that george created over 35 years ago. >> even though we make quite a bit of money with the licensing, when we actually make a movie, it really goes through roof. >> lucas will be creative consultant on the films and says he's already created story outlines. disney had a pretty good track record with pixar and then with marcel as well. the stock up 1.2%. >> stick around, still to come on the program, straight ahead,
retail sectors preparing to count the cost of sandy's destruction. can any expect a boost from the storm? first, let's take a look back at the super storm that hit over the last 48 hours. >> new york city is under water. >> don't mess with mother nature. >> i want you to cut through the red tape. i want you to cut through bureaucracy. there's no excuse for inaction at this point. >> i've never seen anything like this in my life. >> describe it as looking like the pictures we've seen at the end of world war ii. it is not overstating it.
retailers are looking at the impacts the storm will have on their business, especially as they gear up for the lucrative holiday season. for more, we're joined by the executive vice president of the retail council of new york state. ted, thanks very much for calling in. can you give us a sense of what kind of damage retailers in your area are seeing? >> well, you know, the way that everything is in manhattan right now, it's pretty much shut down,
and without power, without electricity, without the subways, without the bridges, it's very difficult for people to get around and to get to the stores. and you've got such a heavy tourism trade in manhattan. that's part of the factor that drives retail so much. it's really kind of wait and see to find out how that will be affected not just this week but in the next two months, the next three months to come. >> ted, what are authorities telling you about the restoration of power, how long that will take, and the transport? are you getting any feedback? >> well, we were in the state's emergency management office for the day yesterday watching all of this. and you know, the estimates range from anywhere from three days to seven days to ten days, and i know that they're trying to get the subways back online within a couple of days, but some of those stations are absolutely full of water. so as you watch these things and
you're sitting in your house and you're thinking when is my power going to come back on, you're worried less about going out and buying something like shirts and pants than you are about buying the things that you're going to need to fix your house. so i think that's where people are starting to really put their focus. >> can you make any estimates of what this might be costing in terms of lost sales, and whether some of this stuff will be caught up later when everything is back up and running. >> well, i don't know what the estimates are, to be totally honest with you. as far as catching up, i think again it's hard to determine the impact of this storm. usually when these things come in, these storms, even if you're talking butt a win t ining abou a blizzard or a hurricane, when it hits, the damage field is usually pretty small. here, this one is just so huge. that you've got all kinds of
consumers who -- like i said, they're thinking less about even when they can get out and go shopping and when the stores are open again, they're thinking less about buying those things that they might want versus the things that they really need, which can be everything from lightbulbs to windows. there's so much damage that it's hard hard to tell how people will respond. >> you can argue that there are going to be some retailers, especially in the home improvement stores, that really benefit from this as a result. are you seeing early signs of that? >> yeah, people are lined up to get into some of the home benefits -- i'm sorry, the home improvement stores, because they want, you know -- they want generators to try to get some power back on and they need all of those things. what that does, of course, is it shifts the consumer dollar right over to those -- to that side of retail industry.
and we saw this last year in new york state, for example, when we got the one-two punch of hurricane irene and then the tropical storm lee. so there was quite an uptick in that sort of business. >> ted, thanks. we may catch up again to see how things have hopefully changed. stick around. after the break, we'll find out how the storm could impact the election. the president is getting set to tour new jersey. stay with us for that. we'll leave you with a look at how the futures are trading. the markets are reopening today on wall street.
welcome back to "worldwide exchange." >> here are the headlines today. >> super storm sandy leaves a massive path of devastation in its wake, and residents up and down the u.s. east coast are now starting what could be a long and costly recovery process. >> but it is back to business for the financial markets in the u.s., they're going to reopen after a few days. it may not be so easy as new york's mass transit system is still snarled. plus, the force. disney has agreed to buy lucas
films for $4 billion and promises a brand-new "star wars" film for 2015. >> you're watching "worldwide exchange," bringing you business news from around the globe. now a reminder, we have seen futures trading all week. what we haven't had is follow-through action, but that will happen today as stock exchanges reopen. the dow jones industrial average is expected to open higher. the nasdaq and s&p 500 are pointed higher as well. we want to watch 1,400 on the s&p. we're well above that, though, at this point. keep an eye on european markets. this is where we're seeing a lot of the positive coming. the ftse 100 is fractionally higher. the xetra dax is now up by three quarters of a percent, so continuing to build and finds its strength in the german consumer, perhaps adding to the better sentiment there.
stay tuned, because at 5:50 a.m. eastern time, we'll look ahead to the trading day, we'll give you a sense with one guest who says volumes are unlikely to recover for several days time. millions of people in the northeastern u.s. will spend days and weeks to recover from sandy, which is being blamed for at least 46 deaths. at the peak, more than eight and a half million business homes and businesses were left without power. the new york city subway system is closed and will remain closed indefinitely. amtrak is going to resume limited regional service, but not to manhattan because of flooded tunnels. jfk and newark airports will reopen with limited service as well and airlines will resume
services at other eastern airports. wind and storm surge damage to residential, commercial properties. >> u.s. financial markets will reopen today. the nymex say they didn't suffer any damage. goldman sachs will open its headquarters in lower manhattan, though it is still running on generator power. bank of america and american express will keep their offices in the world financial center closed and citigroup says its office in lower manhattan sustained extensive flooding. politics are still on hold, with just mere days to go before the u.s. election on tuesday, president obama met with red cross workers in the washington area yesterday and he plans to fly to new jersey this afternoon to meet with governor chris christie, who is paying him some compliments earlier. he's going to tour the storm damage to the jersey store, specifically atlantic city. and mitt romney will resume campaigning today in florida. for more on this, ben white,
president obama plans to fly to new jersey this afternoon to meet with governor chris christie and tour the storm damage to the jersey shore, specifically atlantic city. mitt romney is going to resume campaigning in florida. joining me now is ben white. how does this play out into the election next week? the president is going around looking presidential, i suppose. >> yeah, that tends to help a sitting president. and i think to the extent that it has any impact, i'm not sure it has a big one, it's probably helpful to president obama, particularly today you'll see pictures of him touring the damage in new jersey with the governor of new jersey, chris christie, a republican, who has been a big backer of mitt romney, who in the aftermath of this storm has been very supportive of the president, very thankful for the president's actions here and that's helpful to him. it's tough for mitt romney because it sort of knocks the campaign off the front pages a little bit off the top of the newscast. it takes a bit of momentum away,
and it's hard for a challenger in this situation to get much attention. and he doesn't know whether he should be campaigning or doing relief work, so it's a tough spot for him to be in. but i don't think it has a huge impact. people have mostly made up their minds here. >> this is such a remarkable moment. one of the tightest races we've seen. it would seem that any little change, any deviation could be the difference between one or the other of these candidates pulling this off. >> right, indeed. when you look at a race that is this close going into election day, and there's like a 3% divided vote right now. anything that nudges them going into the election day, if they see news coverage of the president flying around new jersey being very helpful, i think it does potentially make a difference. so i think it could be helpful to him. as you said, any little thing could move the needle some, so that could be the case here. if it does move the needle, it probably moves it towards obama. >> romney proves to be talking
about cutting support for fema. he's not answering questions on that at the moment. how much of an issue is that for him? >> i think it's tough. i think any time it looks like you are not being responsive to questions about a major issue in the news, particularly one that's impacting so many people's lives, and not defending your record and what you've said in the past -- and he has made comments about transferring federal funds for disaster relief to the states. he's made statements about that in the past. and he's just refusing to talk about it. now, if he came out and said look, i think the federal government is doing the right thing, they're helping out in the way that they should. here's how i would do things differently. that might be helpful. but it looks like he's dodging questions right now and this is on everybody's mind, so that can't be helpful to him. >> how is turnout likely to be affected? who is this going to benefit the most? >> i think in terms of reducing turnout, that's where it would be less helpful to president obama. he's counting on a lot of people
showing up that were in his coalition in 2008. he already has a problem with voter intensity. people are not as excited about his campaign as they were in 2008. he needs his folks to turn out in big numbers. the romney electorate voters are more excited. i don't know that it's going to make that much of a difference in virginia where there's early voting. it's less important who actually shows up on election day. i think to the extent that it does diminish people showing up at the polls at all, that is less helpful to the president, more helpful to mitt romney. folks are going to show up one way or the other. it's the obama camp that's really got to get to people, get them to the polls. this will make it a little bit hardener places like virginia. for the most part, he doesn't have any trouble winning new york. >> it's a great point about turnout. we'll keep an eye on all of the states. ben white from politico. what will volumes look like? we'll discuss that when we come back.
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many consumers are forced to revisit their shopping budget following the storm. joining us is scott bernard, thanks very much indeed for joining us. what is the impact on major retailers? how many of them had their stores impacted by the storm, the breadth of which is enormous? >> that's exactly right. the sheer size of the storm that's one of the bigger problems for retail over here in the states. if you think about just in the new york metropolitan region alone, most of the major retailers that you can name have over 10% of their stores.
that's just in the new york area. this storm is all the way up to chicago, all the way up to boston, down here through philadelphia to washington, d.c. i mean, the scale of this is just -- it's enormous. and there's power outages, damage. if you have power, there's a lot that keeps you from the shopping mall over here right now. >> the good thing about this storm was -- the good thing was that at least people were prepared with a lot of advance notice. was there also therefore a lot of advanced purchasing? >> there was an awful lot. we had a lot of news awareness, if you will. the media was keeping on top of it, so it was very good keeping people informed. we also had hurricane irene hit new york last year. so it really trained people to expect -- to prepare for a disaster. maybe not of this scale, certainly, but certainly people learned what to get, how to prepare, so there was a lot of pre-storm shopping done.
>> certainly we're looking for the impact on companies like generics, which makes generators, and energizer batteries. in terms of those who may get a benefit from this. the question becomes some of the drugstores. do they lose sales that they won't be able to make back because people aren't picking up prescriptions. maybe they aren't doing their halloween shopping. >> there are some people who will -- the sales will come back, if you will. if you need your medication, you need your medication. you stocked up before the storm, and you'll come back as soon as you can after the storm to make sure that you have your appropriate medication. but that said, there are certain other locations that simply will not recover. sit-down restaurants are probably the most obvious. while they may go rush out to a convenience store, they won't necessarily sit down for a meal, in the midst of or even after the hurricane because there's so
much activity. that's spending that does not come back. >> will be interesting how if you've got to spend money on cleanup, whether that takes away spending. scott, thanks for joining us this morning. if you're just joining us, these are your headlines. sandy levs a massive path of devastation in its wake as residents begin what could be a long and costly recovery process. >> it is back to business for u.s. financial markets. they'll reopen after being closed the last two days. >> barclays hit by two new investigations in the u.s. as the bank unveiled a 23% drop in profit. residents up and down the u.s. east coast begin to clean up. retailers like home depot and lowe's are leaping into action to help. mary thompson is at lowe's distribution center in pennsylvania. mary, good to see you.
how is their lo jegistics syste going to swing into action now? >> reporter: it swung into action prior to the storm, especially here at the lowe's distribution center. this distribution center, which basically is the size of 22 football fields, serves 114 stores in six states, including a number of those that were hard hit by hurricane sandy. states like new jersey, maryland, and parts of delaware. now, when we were here last night, we saw a truck being loaded up. it was headed for eastern maryland. of course, that part of the state hard hit by storm surges and flooding. so going on to the truck was a palette of emergency supplies. tarps, ropes, generator, things like that. it was being put on at the end or at the back of the truck. so the first thing that the store can take off when the truck reaches its destination. that way it's easily accessible for those in need. now, what's different about this storm, not so much the supplies
that are being sent out to the stores, but basically the number of stores in the region that the supplies are being sent to. it is different than what this distribution center has served in the past. >> the products are very much the same as what we saw with irene. i think the difference with this storm is that what we're seeing is it's a little bit more widespread. irene, it was more centrally located to this particular area. sandy has been -- we've stretched out and delivered to places we normally wouldn't deliver. >> reporter: now that includes generators that this facility was sending out to long island prior to sandy. of course, they started ramping up prior to the storm, and actually have added staff to serve the needs of stores after the storm as well as recovery process gets under way. every year, this facility moves 72 million palates of supplies, and of course, this is a bit of a busy season right now.
the extra staffing is expected to go through through the weekend, and keep in mind, pottsville, pennsylvania, has been affected by sandy as well. a lot of the power lines are down. a number of people don't have electricity, including employees at this facility. so the company -- the distribution center's general manager who you saw earlier, he has had to basically adjust his staffing to adjust to the needs of his own employees who have been affected by the hurricane. guys, back the you. >> a fair point, mary. they've got to work it out themselves as well. plenty more from mary today on cnbc. a reminder, too, the logistics and trucking firms -- >> i don't know why i find supply chain businesses absolutely fascinating. >> that's why we're here. that's also where the retail effect becomes interesting. in any case, as we mentioned earlier, u.s. financial markets will reopen today.
the nymex say they didn't suffer any damage. goldman sachs will open its headquarters in lower manhattan but it is still rung on generator power. b of a will keep their offices closed. citigroup says its office in lower manhattan did sustain extensive flooding. as activity resumes, our next guest expects volumes to be light and says a potential delay of the release of the jobs report friday could put a further damper on trading. he joins us now. michael, good morning and thanks very much for getting up for us. first of all, it doesn't seem as though the jobs report is actually going to be delayed. >> there's a lot of noise about it, but it does look like it will be on track as well as it should be. i think clearly, putting hurricane sandy aside, that would obviously be a pretty
governing feature of the week's markets here. i still think it will be. what i'm impressed by is things are getting put back into place pretty well. if you look at the dominance of the news flow, it's certainly shifting back to earnings reports and such. so i do think that we will be looking at more normal market conditions pretty soon. having said that, i just think logistically there's a lot of traders that will not be able to get to work quite as quickly, so light volumes will be dominant today and tomorrow. >> one of the things -- how are we going to get through that event? >> it's a good question. i think those people that really are very focused on cleaning up the month's end will be -- it will be the ones that are trading. i think a lot of the people are less focused on how their month
end books look will be heading back. most of the trading activity will be focused on people really needing to do something certainly today. >> can you put this in context with past storms for us? we've been talking a lot about the geographical and economic impact, but in terms of trade. >> well, it's interesting. it's hard to make a trade out of a storm. if you look at gasoline futures, which is obviously something very sensitive and vulnerable to a storm like this. a lot of that -- because this storm had been so heavily broadcast by the media, and weather analysts, that you saw this rise up in gasoline prices into the storm. trading from here on is going to be very tricky. we well may have missed that. for all the contraction in supply, people are going to be driving less, too. it's a two-sided equation, of
course. so in terms of -- obviously when you have gulf focus storms, you'll have this issue of shut down of oil platforms that you don't really have here today. so i think very specific trades, as some of your earlier guests were commenting, there's going to be long-term issues, i think getting into the christmas season. one of the very different things about this storm is it's simply late in the season. most of the past storms, whether it's katrina, ike, andrew, irene, they're all late august or early september storms where the vacation industrial was more vulnerable. right now, it will be interesting to see the tradeoff from staples into discretionary spending. getting into the holiday season. >> just looking at the trading today, when you look at exposed sectors like insurance, retail and construction, do you think we'll get the moves that you would assume or not? >> i'd be careful expecting too big a move here.
partly because of volumes, as i mentioned earlier. it's unclear about how exposed these stocks are going to be. i think expect some mixed messages here throughout the day. >> we're seeing certainly the insurers hold up well. there's a sense they may benefit from firmer pricing next year, something households should be aware of, potentially facing higher premiums as a result of this. >> very difficult to pull a trade out of the storm today. >> just one thing about gasoline, it seems to have already moved slightly. anything on the energy side? >> i think if you go back to the past oil flash gasoline spikes really from storms, you really need a storm like katrina and something larger scale to really get more of a sustained follow-through over the next coming weeks. if you go back to past moves in gasoline futures, they're very
short-lived trades and a lot of them already happen before the actual storm hits in anticipation of it. so it's a tricky trade. >> michael, thanks for that. michael purves joining us this morning. let's remind you where we stand. >> talking about markets and positioning when you have a storm this big and with the people who are affected by it. the dow jones industrial average is trying to add about 70 points at the open. stocks are pointing significantly higher. >> they are up again this morning. the ftse is flat. but we're up about 1.5% for the german and french markets. that's where we stand ahead of the u.s. open and ahead of "squawk box." >> thanks for joining us. see you back here tomorrow.
good morning. wall street finally getting ready to open for business after getting knocked out by sandy. they are expected to resume stock trading, as usual, at 9:30 a.m. eastern time. president obama is going to tour storm-ravaged new jersey today. millions are still without power up and down the east coast. and it could be a week or more before it's restored. and the port authority of new york and also of new jersey are reopening jfk and newark airports today, but with just limited service. it is halloween, wednesday, october 31st, 2012. "squawk box" begins right now.